Clark excited for opportunity at Northview

Nov. 16, 2012 @ 05:14 PM

Long-time educator Greg Clark has been named principal of Northview Academy, which will open in the fall of 2013, and he said he's excited about the start of the new school year.

"It's a unique opportunity to open up a new school, and I'm looking forward to it," Clark said. "I've got a lot to do to mesh the faculty and students together, but I'm excited about the next school year to start."

Clark has served as a math teacher at Seymour Primary, assistant principal at Seymour Middle, principal at Seymour Intermediate and principal at Seymour High School (SHS). He said his background at different levels has given him unique credentials that will benefit the students at Northview.

"By having some experience at different levels, I feel like I have a good knowledge of what the students need as they move to different settings, and then once they graduate from high school to be successful in life," Clark said.

Clark's experience working in administrative positions culminated with nine years as principal of SHS, and Assistant Superintendent Debra Cline believes he has the right tools to develop a strong program at Northview.

"With his experience base he's a good fit for developing the Northview program itself, and he has a lot of experience working with students at that age, has the communication style and ability to interact with the people, and I think he'll do a great job there as principal," Cline said.

Clark left SHS in June to take a supervisory position in the Special Education Division of the Sevier County School System, where his duties have included doing teacher evaluations, managing the special education assistants and meeting with principals all over the county to discuss special education issues.

He said traveling to different schools has given him a broader perspective on issues and has helped him realize what he wants to do with Northview.

"The biggest benefit from this (current) job is that I've been able to get out and be in other schools and see how people do things, and not just with special education," Clark said. "What we're going to do at Northview is pick and choose the best practices from the other schools and see how it works here in this community."

The excitement surrounding the idea of opening a new school is what first piqued Clark's interest in the position, and he relishes the opportunity to do something new with his faculty and staff.

"Hopefully it will be new and fresh to everyone," he said. "We can't say, 'We're going to do it this way because we've always done it this way.' We have the opportunity to mold something new that we hope will be effective."

According to a press release sent out by Cline, Clark will begin his new appointment in January of 2013. Right now, Clark is preparing for all the work that's ahead of him — working on schedules, visiting schools outside the county to look at schedules, looking at potential staff, which will come from Sevier County High School, Catlettsburg Elementary School and Northview Middle School.

"I'm also going to attend some functions at Catlettsburg and Northview to get to know the community," Clark said. "There will be more activities planned in the spring."

Then, once school starts, it will be back to business for Clark. He's been there before and knows the drill.

"We just want to make sure we put the safety of the students first, and we want a structured learning environment with a lot of interactive teaching taking place," he said.